This is too much, the only thing you know for sure right now is that Renko is trying to protect you. She's the only solid thing, the only sure thing in all this. Mokou was supposed to help you right? But that death threat sounded real ... you can't tell, you can't tell anything, you have no idea what's going on and it scares you so much you just want to get out of here. You scramble past Mokou, into Renko's arms. She grabs you and pushes you down the carriage, hurrying after you.
"Dammit! Stop running!" Yuka yells. The three foxes leave her side in an instant and bound along to catch up with you, rubbing themselves against your legs and fanning out to cover you from Mokou. Renko glances down at them, but makes no move to get rid of them. "Argh!" Mokou's long scream of pain finally turns to anger and you glance over your shoulder for a moment as she brings her hand down against one of the train seats.
It bursts into flame, fire licking across the fabric and up Mokou's arm.
"I wanted to do this right." She hisses, mostly to herself. You can't take your eyes off the fire as it travels across her body, her shirt catching alight. Her skin is untouched, the flames turning blue against her flesh and hair. She straightens up, unsteady on her feet as the ceiling above her catches fire as well. You and Renko keep moving as the heat increases, melting the floor that Mokou stands on. You can see Renko's face, wide-eyed and terrified. The foxes whine and bark at Mokou. "Because of you," Mokou says, point at Yuka. "Now everyone burns!" Yuka glances past Mokou, at you, now cut off by the halo of fire that's burning the train. She frowns, but then shrugs and sighs. "Okay, you can run now~" Yuka says, grinning. "Wait~ for~ me~ somewhere~" Mokou spins around, eyes suddenly wide, reaching for you with a hand wreathed in flame. The heat is unbearable, like a blowtorch, but Renko shoves you back, scrambling for the door. The foxes slink back as well, keeping away from the spreading flames. You hear the train carriage creak loudly and sag towards the centre, the fire must have damaged something important. But then you see past Mokou, Yuka is ripping one of the handrails off the train. It comes away with a crack and she spins it in her hands then lunges forwards, keeping out of the flames but using the length of the rail to cave Mokou's head in with one blow.
Mokou drops to the floor, skull cracked open. You can't suppress a scream as red bubbles from the wound and she twitches, foaming at the mouth. The blue fire closest to her body goes out, but the carriage keeps burning. Renko kicks the door to the next carriage open and the foxes leap through first as Renko drags you away. "You're too fragile for fire!" Yuka calls after you. "Run away! Go on!" She grins.
You finally tear your eyes from her as the train starts to slow at last. Somebody must have pushed an emergency stop. Renko slams the door after you and carries on down the carriage, you wrapped around her arm. Most of the passengers are trying to get as far from the fire as possible, but a few are still here, slow or too curious for their own good. You can't see Mary anywhere. "Two more here, someone help!" "Are you okay?" "Poor dears." "They're fine, come on." "You hurt?" The barrage of questions flows over you and Renko nods, assuring everyone that you don't need help. She's got her arm around you now, making sure you don't collapse from the stress. The train finally grinds to a stop and the speaker-system comes on.
"Please proceed to the nearest emergency exit." It repeats. "Please proceed to the nearest emergency exit."
You and Renko file out of the doors with everyone else, the foxes still brushing at your heels. The underground is dark, dirty and stinks of burning plastic right now. From outside you can see that the flames have almost devoured the entire carriage. The orange glow lights up the dark tunnel, but you can see another glow, maybe fifty meters away. Looks like you've stopped relatively close to another station. You can see people on the station platform shouting. "Come on, come on! Everyone away from the train!" Somebody shouts, waving his arms around. Looks like he must be the driver.
Renko nudges you, peering at you face with a look of concern. "You okay?" She asks. You nod, taking a shuddering breath. Everything has happened so fast. You just want to lie down and curl up in a ball. Renko tightens her grip around you. "Come on, we need to get out of here." "Hm?" "That woman, Yuka, she might still be around." The foxes just stand by your feet, waiting.
[ ] Follow the other passengers, up to the platform. Blend in, try to hide. [ ] Follow the other passengers. Try to spot Yuka. [ ] Follow the other passengers. Try to spot Mary. [ ] Stay here, hide somewhere. [ ] Safest way would be deeper into the underground.
>>62807 Yuuka /may/ care about our short-term survival, but in the long run she wants something from us, and I doubt it's in out favour, let's get the fuck out, NOW. We must also somehow lose the foxes or we'll never truly get away from anything. Also, it's pretty clear we're the target, Mary can take care of herself, she'll be safer without us. So. [X] Follow the other passengers, up to the platform. Blend in, try to hide.
>>62811 >We just stabbed Mokou in the eye. I don't think she'd have been very happy with us either way.
Who cares if she's happy or not? That she didn't light herself up immediately on being injured suggests that she could still have been talked down if we'd stuck to our guns.
>>62812 >Yuuka /may/ care about our short-term survival, but in the long run she wants something from us, and I doubt it's in out favour, let's get the fuck out, NOW. We must also somehow lose the foxes or we'll never truly get away from anything. Also, it's pretty clear we're the target, Mary can take care of herself, she'll be safer without us. So.
You don't even know what you're trying to get away from. And if you keep running, as you have been, you never will.
And you want to run from the foxes? The only youkai that have displayed anything akin to care or decency, whereas others want to just outright murder you? Fucking stupid.
>>62814 Precisely what have they done so far except hamper us and prod towards Yuuka? Are you really certain we want to have anything to do with her? >>62819 None of it is on our concience while we remain ignorant. We do need more information, but we have to assume that just about everybody from gensoukyou except /perhaps/ Yukari is out to kill us. And even with her we can't be certain, it's pretty sure that she won't want to have her two year investment on us to go to waste, but we really don't know much else of her motives. Now, we will want to engage some of the residents in some way to gain information, BUT we must do it on our own terms, not theirs.
>>62819 Until we meet one of them who actually deigns to tell us who they are, what they want with us, and what's going on. Which everyone so far has refused to do. So, okay, they get shot, shanked, run from, and maybe erased from reality if we're pushed any further. Their fault if they won't answer simple questions.
>Now, we will want to engage some of the residents in some way to gain information, BUT we must do it on our own terms, not theirs
You're making me curious as to how we're going to pull such a thing off. I mean, it's not like we're negotiating with people that can tear metal apart with their bare hands and stop a train right on the tracks.
I bet sooner or later somebody's going to go, "Either you come with me or I rip Renko apart like she was made of wet tissue paper."
You and Renko hurry along with the other passengers, towards the station platform. People are talking all around you, an angry buzz of panic and stress. You want to shut it all out, clinging closer to Renko. The foxes seem to respond to your exhaustion, pressing closer but keeping out of your way. Renko looks around, trying to see over the heads of the people closest. "Where's Mary?" She says. You perk up a little and glance around as well. You can't see her anywhere nearby, but she must be somewhere in this crowd. That Yuka woman must be here as well, maybe trying to blend in with the other passengers, though from the way she acted on the train you doubt she would bother trying to be inconspicuous. Nevertheless, you look over your shoulder, scanning for a glimpse of green hair or a scrap of plaid. You don't see her anywhere close, but you're too jittery, too full of adrenaline to concentrate properly. You don't know precisely why you want to spot her right now. She's dangerous, there's no denying that. But she was trying to ... what? What was she trying to do? She didn't want to kill you, since she told you to run from the fire. She's so strong, holding the train in place with nothing but her bare hands. So carelessly violent, but not towards you. You swallow, this isn't right, there's ...
There's something about her. Raw power in female form. You force yourself to ignore what you're starting to feel. That's wrong, uncomfortable, unsettling.
"Mary!" Renko says suddenly, pushing through the crowd and taking you with her. Mary turns at the sound of her voice, relived smile sudden lighting up her face. "Ren." She says, taking Renko's other hand. "That ... that was really scary." Mary gulps, closing her eyes for a moment. "It's okay Mary." Renko says. "Don't worry. We're out now." "Thought I'd lost you." Mary mutters, but doesn't spare you a glance. Renko just pulls her closer, glancing around and letting out a slow, shaky breath. The three of you stumble along with the crowd, finally reaching the platform and making your way back into the light and the safety of something approaching normality. A group of fire-fighters is doing something, running. Somebody shouting, people slumping down on the floor. You feel your adrenaline finally starting to drain away when you spot her again. The crowd parts for a moment, and there she is, parasol held behind her, stepping around people, grinning at you. There's not a scratch on her. You feel Renko go rigid. Mary makes a pained squeaking noise. The three foxes just sit on their haunches, relaxed.
Yuka stops, a little way in front of you. "Hello~" She says, making your stomach bunch up into a tight ball again. Why, you can't exactly decide. "H-h-hello." You stammer, eyes wide. "Well then." Yuka says, slowly extending her hand, palm-up, offering it to you. Her fingers are so long and slender, so precise and delicate. She inclines her head, narrowing her eyes and licking her lips. The effect is so confusing, so horrible.
"Coming?" She asks with a grin.
[ ] Take her hand. [ ] Take her hand, but don't let go of Renko. [ ] Don't take her hand, demand to know what's going on. [ ] Don't take her hand, run.
[X] "P-please, explain everything y-you know. I'm t-tired of not knowing what's g-going on." [X] Take her hand, but don't let go of Renko. You have a bad feeling about this for a moment, but it passes.
You feel your legs about to give way. If Renko wasn't holding onto you so tight, you might just collapse and fall to the your knees in front of Yuka. This is too much, the aura of barely contained violence she gives off, the ... the sheer power of her, just standing there, let alone in action. It makes your insides feel like lead, makes your heart pound inside your chest so hard it hurts, makes you want to grovel, throw yourself at her, scream and pass out all at once.
It makes you want to take her hand.
"Well?" Yuka says, cocking her head, impatience showing on her face as the smile slowly drops away. You reach out, your hand shaking. To actually touch her, you surely can't live through such an experience. You'd be overwhelmed, destroyed by the force of what she is, absorbed and remade, taken and used. The thought makes you shudder, but you're not sure why. "P-please, explain everything y-you know." You manage to force out, taking a series of deep breaths. You have to ask this, before you touch her, before you surrender yourself. "I'm t-tired of not knowing what's g-going on." You can feel your eyes filling with tears. Not of sorrow, but from total emotional overload. The smile returns to Yuka's face and she sighs. "So I am, little one, so~ am~ I~" She says. "But I will explain, once we are in more pleasant surroundings."
You take her hand, feeling as if you're about to make contact with a live electrical wire.
Soft, ordinary skin. She has a firm grip. You look back up at her shining, red eyes. "N-normal." You mutter. Yuka raises one eyebrow, questioningly. The spell is broken and you finally breathe out. You become aware of the rest of the world again, of the feeling of Renko next to you, of Mary shaking in fear behind you, of the three foxes panting happily. "Shall we go?" Yuka asks, raising your hand a little and turning. "I- ... I'm n-not," you say in a very small voice. "I'm n-not going a-alone." You squeeze Renko's hand and she squeezes back. Yuka cocks her head at you again, then sighs and rolls her eyes. You flinch, but nothing happens. "I'm only looking for you, but if those two can keep up, then they can follow." She says. "Right~?" She flashes a smile. You notice Mary hiding her face behind Renko.
"Then off we go!" Yuka says, leading you away from the station, up, into the midday sun.
Outside, Yuka seems even more animated and full of vitality, walking only a few paces ahead of you through the streets of Tokyo. You don't have the nerve to ask her where she's taking you. People seem to part before her, making way in front of her sheer presence. Renko stays clamped to your arm and Mary scurries along behind. The three foxes slink along between you and Yuka, but it's obvious from their position that they're with you, not following at Yuka's heels. Whenever you pass through the shade of a building, Yuka turns back and smiles or winks at you, but mostly she seems to be lost in thought or something, moving her head back and fourth in the sunlight.
"Hey." Renko whispers in your ear. "We could try losing her in the crowds." Mary's face appears, peaking over your and Renko's shoulders. "I'm ... I need to get out of here." She says. "I don't want her seeing my face." Renko looks between you and Mary, biting her lip. Yuka doesn't seem to have heard.
[ ] Renko is right, this is the perfect time to escape. You want to escape ... don't you? Don't you? [ ] No, you need to see this through, you have to know what's going on. This has to end. [ ] You can't leave Yuka now. She's too ... fascinating, somehow.
[ ] Tell Mary she can go. [ ] Tell Mary you're going to need her, ask her to stay.
[ ] Renko can go if she wants, Yuka only wants you. [ ] You need Renko to stay, you need her.
>[ ] You can't leave Yuka now. She's too ... fascinating, somehow. >[ ] You need Renko to stay, you need her. These two probably won't work together, so...
[X] You can't leave Yuka now. She's too ... fascinating, somehow. [X] Tell Mary she can go. [X] Renko can go if she wants, Yuka only wants you. Well, Yuka is fascinating but I don't want to put Renko and Mary in danger.
[x] You can't leave Yuka now. She's too ... fascinating, somehow. [x] Tell Mary she can go. [x] Renko can go if she wants, Yuka only wants you. [x] Ask Mary if she wants to find out what this 'Yukari' business is all about too, first.
>>62889 True. I always thought of Yuuka as being polite and friendly, if not a little jaded or detached, until something pisses her off. Basically everyone else is a weak insect not worth her time, but if one causes her irritation she wouldn't have any qualms with squashing it.
You glance at Yuka's back, then at her hips, swaying as she walks, swishing her skirt around her calves. The motion is nearly entrancing. On any other woman it would be attractive, perhaps for a while. But on Yuka it's like watching a tree moving in the breeze. Nature's purpose and intention, expressed and concentrated so tightly that you can't do anything but stare in awe. You gulp, turning back to Renko as you walk. "No." You whisper. "I-I t-think-"
You think what? You can't express your thoughts about this, not to Renko. Truth is, you just don't want to let Yuka out of your sight yet. You need more.
"I-I don't think she's g-going t-to hurt us." You say, feeling terrible. How can you lie to Renko? She's shown you nothing but kindness, she's so gentle and reassuring. The complete opposite of the creature you're following through the streets. You stare into Renko's eyes for a moment as she takes a deep breath, glancing at Yuka to make sure she's not overhead. "Okay." Renko hisses back. "I'll trust your judgement, but I won't trust her yet." Renko squeezes your hand. You feel so guilty you could just drop to the pavement and start crying. You can't risk Renko's safety because of your own obsessive fascination. This is why you submitted to Yukari's teaching, you can't help yourself. You can do nothing but listen and obey, following in the wake of monsters. "I don't trust your fucking judgement!" Mary hisses in your ear. "Let's go already!" You sigh and close your eyes, feeling awful. "Y-You can g-go if you w-want." You say. Maybe if Mary leaves, she won't be in any danger and you won't feel so guilty. Oh god, even this is selfish. You're utterly wretched. "Wha-" Renko glares at Mary as she nods. "Mary! You-" "I'm not risking my life for this." She says, voice full of indignation. "But you," she suddenly takes Renko's head and turns it, placing a kiss on her cheek. "You better come out of this, understand?" Renko suddenly blushes, obviously stunned. "Mary I-" "Shut up." Mary says, turning red as well. "Come home safe, you idiot."
Without another word, Mary vanishes through the crowd.
Renko is silent for a long time, staring down, lost in throughout. One of the foxes nudges against her leg, whining, but Renko completely ignores it. Yuka glances back a few times and you can't help but look into her eyes when she does, mesmerised by the redness. She doesn't notice, or doesn't care, that Mary has left. "Renko?" You whisper eventually. "Hm?" Renko finally looks up, blinking and swallowing. "I ... sorry." She says, giving you a shaky smile. "You ... Renko." You say, feeling nothing but compassion for her right now, trying to ignore the tiny, irrational pang of jealousy deep down inside. "You can g-go too, if y-you want." You say, trying to smile. "Y-yuka said s-she only wants m-me and ..." You gulp, feeling horrible again. "M-mary said ... M-mary s-said." "I know." Renko replies, squeezing your hand. "But, this is ... this is your choice." She says, expressive grave. "What?" You say. "Do you want me to come with you?" She says. "You ..." "I know what's probably about to happen." Renko says, face going paler. "Either you want me to come with you, and we're in this together, or you decide to go alone." "Renko." You mutter, feeling your bottom lip wobble. She takes a deep breath. "I've made up my mind. I'll follow your lead. What will it be?"
[ ] You want Renko to come with you, whatever happens. [ ] You'll do this alone, Renko deserves to go back to life.
>>She's only being nice because she wants something.
Considering it's Yuka, I wouldn't be surprised if all she's after is to crack some skulls and fight some strong opponents. If Youki and Mokou are an indication of the sorts we have after us (and apparently willing to go so far as to kill us), tagging along with us would seem like the perfect way to run into the sort of enemies Yuka loves dealing with the most.
I wouldn't worry so much about what Yuka stands to gain from helping us, but what someone else might stand to gain from Yuka helping us.
[x] No, you need to see this through, you have to know what's going on. This has to end. [x] Renko and Mary can go if they want, Yuka only wants you. [x] Ask Mary if she wants to find out what this 'Yukari' business is all about, first.
[P] You want Renko to come with you, whatever happens. [P] "I... I'm so selfish... but, you're the only person who was nice to me, and... I... even though Mary is waiting for you, I still..."
I may already be enamored of Yuuka and prepared to fall for her, but just because I have target doesn't mean I want to lose friends. Renko is a good friend, which is always a valuable thing to have. Plus, she's great emotional support, and the character who's liable to relate to us best.
"I ... Renko." You say, gulping, feeling your eyes filling with tears again. You want her with you, protecting you. Whatever is about to happen, you don't want to face it alone. Renko has been so good to you, so gentle. "I... I'm so selfish... but, you're the only person who was nice to me, and... I... even though Mary is waiting for you, I still..." You say. Too overwhelmed to be self-conscious anymore, your voice comes out almost clear. Renko squeezes your hand, smiling. "Then I come with you." She says. You nod, fighting not to break down. "I come with you." She says, expression hardening again. "Let's see what's going on down the rabbit-hole, shall we?"
You're still scared.
After nearly a solid hour of walking, Yuka starts to glance left and right with more purpose, obviously looking for something. You still can't work up the nerve to ask where you're going, but Renko's presence makes you feel safe enough not to dissolve into tears. The foxes seem utterly relaxed. "Ah!" Yuka suddenly perks up as you get to the end of the block. "Down here." She turns around the corner, into an alleyway, vanishing from sight. You feel Renko tense for a moment as you follow Yuka. In the alleyway, Yuka pushes open a small wooden door and gestures for you to go in first. "It's perfectly safe." She says. "Just don't want you running off." She grins. You take a step forwards and peer into the building. Looks abandoned, bare walls, boarded-up windows and dust all over the floor. There's a flight of stairs leading up and a few boxes at the back. By the size of the room, you'd guess it was once some kind of night-club or restaurant. The three foxes all bound through, not wary in the slightest. "Go on~" Yuka says. You tense up as you pass by her, from fear or excitement you can't tell. Yuka confuses the hell out of you and you don't really want to confront those emotions. Not now, not with Renko here, not ever. You and Renko both step through the door, into the room. Renko has her hand inside her jacket, tensed and breathing slowly.
Yuka shuts the door behind her, wafting past you like the bough of a tree picked up by the wind. She stops in the middle of the room and turns around, facing you. "Over here~" She points at a spot a couple of feet in front of her. You glance at Renko and she nods, letting go of your hand but staying right next to you. "C-can you a-answer m-my questions now?" You ask Yuka as you walk over, head bowed, trying not to panic. Renko pats you on the shoulder as you both stand in front of Yuka. The foxes cluster around your feet. Curiously enough, that really makes you feel better. You smile down at them and they look back at you, panting. "Hm? I can, yes, but first," Yuka reaches inside her waistcoat. Renko tenses up and edges forwards, but Yuka pulls out what looks like an ordinary cellphone. She flips it open and frowns, jabbing angrily at the buttons for a moment, then baring her teeth before holding it to her ear. She doesn't take her eyes off you while she talks. "It's me." She says. "I have her, and another one. Do you want that?" Yuka grins. "Yes, I think so. Okay. Yes, I'm there, bring us back through." A long pause. "Yes yes, the fucking mongrels are here as well, get on with it." She says, frowning down at the foxes. One of them looks at her and barks softly. She flicks the phone shut and then looks up at you again. "Questions~? We have a little while." She grins, winking at you. "Make them entertaining questions, please."
You stare back at her, swallowing.
[ ] Ask a question. What to ask her, this monster in plaid?
"Why?" You say, unable to force the rest of the question out. Yuka just raises her eyebrows. "Why ... why a-am I s-so important?" You say, feeling a lump forming in your throat as you speak, feeling yourself starting to lose it at last. "Why?!" You nearly scream. "Why me!?" Yuka smiles, almost gently, placing the tip of her parasol on the ground in front of her and resting her hands on it. "You're not important, not to me." She says, smile vanishing as she speaks. The effect is terrifying. Like staring into the face of a large animal and knowing that it doesn't understand or care about human reasons. "Only my flowers are important." She says, brightening again, cocking her head and smiling. "You, on the other hand, appear to be important to Ran. So I was sent here to fetch you." "R-ran?" You ask. "W-who's that?" Renko taps you on the shoulder, you turn to her. "That's good news." She says, smiling. "Ran's one of Yukari's servants."
Your stomach drops. You're being summoned to see Yukari? In person? Why didn't she just tell you in her dreams? You're ... you're not ready for this, not at all. You don't want to meet her but ... another part of you does want to meet Yukari. That part of you wants to grovel at her feet, kiss her hand in supplication, ask her in person to just stop everything. You want, after two years of seeing her every night, to bury your head against her and cry, to hit her until she bleeds, to hug her and scream at her. You feel yourself growing faint.
"I ... I c-cant, I c-can't m-meet Y-y-yukari. I-I can't." You bury your face in your hands, letting out a sob. "You won't be meeting Yukari." Yuka says. You look back up. "Why ... why not?" Yuka laughs, a sharp, mocking noise, but melodic at the same time. "It's impossible at the moment. That why Ran~ wants~ you~" She smiles. You're too stunned to reply. What the hell is going on? "Why has everyone else been after her?" Renko suddenly asks. Yuka frowns at her, obviously displeased with the interruption. "Who is 'everyone else', pray tell?" Yuka says. "Mokou." Renko says. "And we killed someone last night, a half-ghost man." Yuka's eyes go wide for a second and she grins. "You killed Youki?" She puts her hand to her mouth, eyes flicking between the pair of you. "Who was it, I wonder~?" She grins, licking her lips.
The foxes sniff the air and one of them barks.
"Ah~!" Suddenly Yuka looks over her shoulder. Renko takes your hand. You can feel her tensing up. "Did I hear something? Did I?" She looks back at you, still grinning. "What?" You ask, bewildered. "I think I did~" Yuka says. "She's right." Renko says. "I heard that too." Yuka frowns at Renko. "Good ears, for a human." "How long do we have to wait?" Renko asks. "We should get going." Her eyes flick across the room, to the stairs leading upwards. "Well .... " Yuka smiles at you. "I think now we have to wait until I smoke out a rat~" She twirls around on the spot and raises her umbrella, pointing it at the stairs. "Come out, come out, little mouse~" She sings. You can hear something this time. Something sifting. Fabric on masonry. All three foxes start barking and growling. Then a-
The motion from the stairwell is too fast to follow with your eyes, it only registers somewhere down in your instincts. Something shoots forwards, barrelling into Yuka and throwing her to the side in an instant. She bounces off the wall with a loud crunch, sending bits of brick flying everywhere, landing face down. She's up and moving without so much as a pause for breath, teeth bared and about to leap, but the thing in front of you stops moving for a second. It's tall, close to seven feet. Thin, willowy, wearing a black body-suit of some kind. It's obviously male, but you can't see the face, obscured as it is by a helmet like a black sphere, reflecting your own horrified face back at you. He looks tensed, poised in some kind of martial arts stance. The foxes whine in terror, slinking backwards but staying in front of you.
You can't see the eyes, but you can tell he's looking at you.
[ ] Pass out from the fear. [ ] Run, let Yuka deal with it. [ ] It's close, slam it in the head while he's paused like that. [ ] Order the foxes to attack him. [ ] "Renko, shoot him!"
>It's tall, close to seven feet. Thin, willowy, wearing a black body-suit of some kind. It's obviously male, but you can't see the face, obscured as it is by a helmet like a black sphere, reflecting your own horrified face back at you. He looks tensed, poised in some kind of martial arts stance
Ebolanon has been living with Yukari in her head for two years. Throw in the fact that she bleeds out her face everyone morning and that people are trying to kill her or take her to Gensokyo for some reason and I'd say she's entitled to be as skittish, frightened and stutter as much as she wants.
Throw in the fact that Yuka is here and then she's really entitled.
>>I think it's happening because we broke something in our head when we did ɱɐK℈ ª ⅁Aℙ thing. At least I hope that's why.
Between that and the whole "waking up bleeding from every hole in your head" thing that had been going on for roughly the past two years, I think it's amazing if a little stuttering is all the poor girl has to deal with.
>>62993 As for the stuttering, there's telling and showing: the former only points the audience in a direction, the latter holds their hand until they get to the destination. It also looks less messy on paper, metaphorically speaking.
It was total humiliation to be genuflecting before the half-ghost who had raped my little sister and scooped out my best friend's eyes.
But I didn't want to die. While there is life, there is hope. My precious life is irreplaceable. So I plastered an obsequious smile on my face and meekly got down on my hands and knees. "YA FUCKIN' LOSER! NO GAPBITCH WOULD BOW DOWN THAT EASILY! Die like the dog you are!" Cyber Youki then lifted one of his legs, and sent it hurtling towards my prostrated head. Its heel sank into the back of my head with a disgusting crunch. My head cracked open like a pomegranate and fresh blood splattered everywhere . . .
I really don't want to be taken away with Yuka yet, not because it's Yuka or anything but because I don't wana leave quite yet. Let's at least conspire to meet with Mary again before we go, I'm certain that if we don't take her she'll be snapped up by another for whatever reason and used against us. Particularly seeing as Renko's with us. Plus it's probably a bad idea for ebolanon to see another fight today, can't afford to loose too many sanity points.
Also, does this remind anyone of the first story to start in /other/? The one set outside of Gensokyo, because this reads like that idea should've been.
You edge backwards, pushing Renko along with you. "Wha- what is, what is he?" She mumbles, at a loss for words. The foxes keep barking, backing away, but staying in front of you. The helmet, nothing but a black, reflective sphere, turns. Not as if the man is moving his head, but like the whole thing is rotating on a pivot, so slowly you almost don't notice it through the haze of fear and adrenaline. He's still frozen in place, like a statue of obsidian. This might be your only chance. You screw your eyes shut for a moment, trying to overcome the pounding in your chest and the hollow, cold feeling inside. Then fast as you can, you grab Renko's hand and scramble towards the door, dragging her behind you, trying to put as much distance as you can between you and whatever that thing is. You hear Yuka scream with savage glee as she launches herself at the man, but above her voice your hear a single click, so loud and clear that it rings inside your head.
Yuka's voice cuts off suddenly and you hear a pained grunt. Glancing over your shoulder you see her bounce off the ceiling with a crunch, landing in a heap at the man's feet. You wince, the force of that fall was enough to break a normal person's bones. But Yuka is far from normal. She growls, teeth bared, bracing herself against the ground as the man places his unclad foot on her head and presses down into the floor. She roars with pain, eyes screwed up with pain or rage. "Yuka!" You shout, suddenly afraid. Yuka is ... you really don't want to lose her so soon, now that you've met her. It's insane, you should be rejoicing in a chance to escape, but your gut reaction right now is to stick close to her. Is it because she's offering you some kind of explanation? Or that she's going to take you to someone who can give you some answers? Yuka ... is it her? Her sheer overwhelming presence? You can't bare to watch. Renko tugs on you and you realise you've stopped short, staring back at the fight. "Come on!" She shouts. You gulp, mouth dry, body shaking with fear.
The man's helmet seems to be rotating again and Yuka digs her fingers into his ankle-joint, just above her head. She screams with rage and rips out his tendon in one swift motion, blood splattering over her hair and face. He collapses, falling backwards as Yuka shoots up and slams her fist into his chest. He hits the floor with a loud crack. "What the fuck are you?!" She screams at him as he lies prone. The foxes suddenly shoot over and surround the man, tensed, growling.
That click? What was that? You should get out of here, fast as you can, but you're not leaving anyone behind, not, Renko, Yuka or those mysterious foxes. Yuka's getting the crap beaten out of her, you can't take any more risks. Greater than your fascination with her is the simple need right now for a protector and a guide through this madness. You put your fingers in your mouth, about to whistle for the foxes to follow you.
You're too slow.
The man, ruined ankle still streaming with blood, bolts upright and hurls himself at Yuka. The angle is wrong, the way his body moves. It's because he used his arms to propel himself, his leg is too damaged. His fist crashes into her face and she grunts with pain, head whipping back. The man falls on top of her, bearing her down with his weight. The foxes lunge at him, all at once, biting into his legs and arms, but he doesn't react, just bringing his fist down on Yuka's face again and again. Blood flies everywhere as her head bounces off the floor. Next to you, Renko pulls her gun from her coat, but hesitates, dragging you back instead of taking a shot. "Argh!" Yuka manages a strangled scream, scrabbling at the helmet with her hands, nails taking chunks out of it. The man doesn't slow until one of the foxes hops onto his back and buries it's snout in his neck, biting and ripping. He spasms and shakes, trying to throw it off. Yuka takes the opening, twisting her arm around and-
Crunch. Her hand comes out the back of his chest, streaming with gore, chunks of bone and meat splattering the ceiling above.
Yuka rolls him off as the foxes bound away. She stands up, shaking a little, wiping her face with her hands. She turns and grins at you. You almost scream. She's a mess, face covered in blood and specks of flesh, bruised and split in multiple places, hair matted with gore. For all the damage done to her, she doesn't seem to show the pain at all. The foxes growl again and Yuka looks down at the man's body.
The black, reflective, rotating helmet, the fact that he started fighting defensively at first... The "he's a bomb" theory still makes sense to me, and if he's not a bomb, he still seems to be buying time for something big.
I totally can. Being thrown in one shitstorm after another, I can imagine that, in her adrenaline fueled stupor, she'll start saying some things that she never would while calm(because of her growing desperation to end it all), and if played back to her on a recording, she'd go "Holy shit, that was me?"
And I'd also like to see Renko and/or Yuka say something along the lines of "Gee, what's gotten into you?"